A Lebanese tutor encourages a student to merge his traumatic family history into a grammar exercise about terrorism.
Twenty years on from his emergence as an enfant terrible of Canadian cinema, Egoyan continues to explore ideas of cultural identity with this Toronto-set tale of a Lebanese tutor (Arsinée Khanjian) who encourages a student (Devon Bostick) to merge his traumatic family history into a grammar exercise about terrorism.
When reined in on literary adaptations like Felicia’s Journey, Egoyan made haunting noirs, but freed from the discipline of linear plotting, he spirals into abstraction, offering chaotic observations on such ‘big issues’ as 9/11 and the net. Despite strong turns, it feels little more than an Egoyan lecture on Serious Stuff; lots to talk about, little to enjoy.
Without the constrictions of an adapted text, Egoyan's creativity turns towards intellectual exercise and